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Fontes Anglo-Saxonici: A Register of Written Sources Used by Authors in Anglo-Saxon England: Nineteenth Progress Report


Peter Jackson, for the Management Committee

[Editor's Note: this is an appropriate place to correct a misstatement which found its way into the annual report of new electronic resources for Anglo-Saxon Studies in OEN 37.1. On p. 49 of that issue it was stated that the standalone version of Fontes can be "purchased as a CD-ROM"; in fact the CD-ROM is available at no charge, as noted below. OEN regrets the error and any confusion it may have caused.]

At the moment, Fontes is not in receipt of funding, but the work of maintaining the website, publicizing the project and editing and adding new entries to the database continues, though inevitably in a smaller way than in the past. Dr. Christine Rauer is responsible for both new texts added in the last year, the Old English Wonders of the East and the Latin Liber Monstrorum - 174 entries in all, bringing the total number of texts to about 1150 and the number of entries to almost 30,000.

Before leaving the project in July 2003, our Research Associate in Anglo-Latin, Dr. Augustine Casiday, had submitted over 90 entries on the introductory chapters of Aldhelm's prose De virginitate, almost doubling the number of identifications reported in Ehwald's edition. These entries are now being edited, and it is hoped to add the sources for the rest of the work identified by Ehwald to serve as a baseline for future research.

The website (http://fontes.english.ox.ac.uk) continues to attract about 450 hits a month, while the CD-ROM version issued in 2002 has been appreciatively reviewed in Notes and Queries for September 2003 ("an outstanding, continuing contribution to Anglo-Saxon scholarship … Fontes has revolutionized source-study"). Recent assessments for the Arts and Humanities Research Board, which awarded a major grant to the project between 1999 and 2002, were equally enthusiastic: "clear, easy to use, accurate and painstaking in its accounting for sources," "the CD version is one of the most flexible and accessible tools in our field." As before, copies of the CD-ROM are available on request from Dr. Rohini Jayatilaka (contact details below); potential users may like to note that this version can also be downloaded free of charge from the website. It should perhaps be mentioned here that the preferred methods of citation for both the CD-ROM and the online version have recently been revised and can be consulted in OEN 37.1 (Fall 2003), p. 35, or on the project's website.

Our regular programme of Open Meetings and Committee meetings also continues. The Management Committee met in Cambridge in October 2003, and Professor Clare Lees hosted the 20th Open Meeting at King's College London in April 2004. The Open Meeting included a detailed report on the Alfredian Boethius Project by Malcolm Godden and Susan Irvine and a round-table discussion on 'Methodologies' by Kathryn Powell, Graham Caie, Mary Swan and Elizabeth Tyler. A report of the 2003 Open Meeting can be found in the Newsletter of Teachers of Old English in Britain and Ireland, 16 (Spring 2003), iii-iv.

Yet again, we are very much indebted to Dr. Rohini Jayatilaka, who continues to administer the website in her spare time despite her involvement in the Boethius Project. And yet again, the Management Committee would be glad to hear from scholars willing to source the (relatively few) remaining texts in Old English and the (rather more) in Latin. Potential contributors in the Old English field should contact Dr. Susan Irvine (Department of English Language and Literature, University College London, Gower Street, London, WC1E 6BT, UK), and in the Latin field, Dr. Rosalind Love (Robinson College, Cambridge, CB3 9AN, UK); while enquiries about the database, and requests for the CD-ROM, should be addressed to Dr. Rohini Jayatilaka, either via the Fontes website or by e-mail (fontes@english.ox.ac.uk).



Fontes entries added to the database since March 14 2003 [as of March 20 2004]

• Old English: C.B.22.2 – ANON (OE), Wonders of the East, C. Rauer, 37 entries

• Latin: L.N.100 – ANON (Lat.), Liber Monstrorum, C. Rauer, 137 entries


Current database statistics

• Number of texts: 1155 (536 OE; 619 Latin)

• Number of entries: 29,726 (22,199 OE; 7527 Latin)